Thais, Cambodians Cooperate To Clean River

Thai and Cambodian officials presented a more harmonious pic­ture of cross-border relations in Poipet town on Wednesday when hundreds of officials and villagers from both sides of the frontier co­operated to clean up the O’Chrou river.

Demarcating the border be­tween Thailand and Cambodia in Poipet town, the O’Chrou river has been the center of frequent squabbles between authorities from both countries who have blamed each other for polluting the shared water system.

But on Wednesday, along a kilo­meter-long stretch of the river, Thais on one side and Cambodian on the other worked to clean trash from the river’s banks and water.

“Rubbish and tin cans are flowing into the river from every direction and sewage is coming from Thailand and Cambodia’s casinos. We have to make it clean,” O’

Chrou district Chief Keo Sen said on Thurs­day. “When the river is good we are healthy too.”

Poipet resident Pok Chantha, 17, said he hadn’t realized just how polluted the river was until three months ago when a swim he took in the O’Chrou resulted in an itchy skin rash on his face and body.

“I didn’t know it was a polluted ri­v­er,” Pok Chantha said Thurs­day.


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